The International Organization for Migration (IOM) and UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) have called on the EU to implement a series of measures aimed at assisting people trapped in Libya or at risk of dying on the Mediterranean Sea. The suggestions include restarting a program of organized sea rescues.
In the past European State vessels conducting search and rescue operations saved thousands of lives, including through disembarkations in safe ports,” the IOM and UNHCR noted in a statement on Thursday. “They should resume this vital work….”
Why is there no effort, though, no euro—not a single cent—committed to helping these people at the source? Certainly, it would be very difficult to help Libya, Sudan, Niger, et al. improve and correct their situation, political and economic, so that their citizens wouldn’t feel constrained to leave. But “hard” means “possible,” and France has shown some of that possible in Chad, and Niger has made progress on its own with very damn little—too little—help from outside.
But it’s cheaper in the short-term and easier to focus on rescues at sea and “disembarkations in safe ports” than it is to do the hard work of a long-term solution.
But were such long-term efforts brought about, the flow of refugees would fall off markedly, and sea rescues and relocations would become much more feasible.
Of course, at that point, the virtue signalers would need to find something else with which to signal their…virtue.
And now the distortion: the IOM and UNHCR pronounced in a joint statement
NGO boats…must not be penalized for saving lives at sea.
DW contributed to the distortion:
Independent rescue operations such as Sea-Eye…which rescued 44 people near Libya earlier this week [as of 12 Jul], have attempted to fill the void left after earnest EU efforts ceased, but non-government organizations face increasing persecution from governments such as Italy’s, which has tried to frame their efforts as criminal.
Italy has done no such thing. Italy has said nothing about rescue operations; it only has enforced its laws concerning entering Italian territorial waters, even Italian ports, without permission—these are criminal acts, no framing required.
The situation concerning the refugees is not helped by such shenanigans.